It had been less than a month since their last major battle. After defeating the brotherhood of evil, the Teen Titans faced very little resistance in their goal of eradicating evil. After all, they had personally locked up most of the local villains, as well as several from different jurisdictions.
In that time a lot had changed. The city that the Titans had fought so hard to defend had continued to grow without them. Their favorite pizza place had closed down, personal stores had been demolished, even the mall had been relocated.
All of those changes paled in comparison to one, however: Terra... She had "died" months ago in an attempt to save the city. But considering it was in danger because of her, one could only imagine that destiny had hand picked her fate. Here Seismo-kinetic powers had turned her into stone... So in a sense, she was as good as dead.
However, Beast Boy had discovered something unsettling, yet reassuring. Somehow, Terra had been freed from her stone prison. Her self-inflicted exile had come to an end and she was free to walk amongst the living once again... But in exchange for the return of her mobility, she had apparently been robbed of her memories.
She hadn't even recognized Beast Boy, despite his multiple attempts to remind her of who she was. Perhaps that was for the best. Though it pained him to leave her, that is exactly what he was forced to do. She had finally found the life she always wanted. She was free from the burden of her uncontrollable powers and the judgement of the world for her lack of said control.
With a heavy heart and tears desperately pleading to be released, Beast Boy, no, Garfield, could not help but smile. Though he would never know the warmth of her touch or the feeling of her kiss again, she would know the happiness he knew he could never give her. The happiness of a normal life.
Raven had not slept well since her return to the tower. The time she had spent away from the city seemed to have made it alien to her, and though she yearned for the good night's rest that she had only ever achieved there, she found that it was now eluding, nay refusing her.
"Uggghhhh..." She sighed. Her eyes fell upon the clock that lay next to her bed. "3:18 in the morning..." She grumbled.
She tossed and turned in a feeble attempt to try and catch some sleep, but she knew all too well that it would not come to her this night.
She took one last look out of her window and stared as the full moon illuminated the night sky. Clouds lay, bowing at its feet as if to signal its dominance.
"... Might as well get an early start on the day..." She mumbled, obviously fatigued and irritated. She got out of bed and changed out of her night gown and into her regular uniform. As she dragged herself to the kitchen to make some tea, she noticed another presence already there. A figure, slightly shorter than her sat at the table. His green arms folded in front of him. His head, resting on them silently.
"Beast Boy..." She thought to herself. But what was he doing in the kitchen at this hour? Though she wanted to simply go about her business, she felt the bothersome tug of friendship pull her towards him.
She continued to make her tea, placing the kettle on the stove. Then, she turned to face the unmoving green changeling.
"... So... Are you gonna tell me why you're up so early, or are you going to pretend that you haven't noticed I'm here...?" She asks coldly.
He slowly looks up. "I didn't want to bother you..." He responds.
"... Bothering me is what you do best..." She retorts, with a somewhat less harsh sting in her words.
"... I don't know if I should say something... Or whether it's best to keep it to myself..."
The kettle begins to whistle. "It's up to you... I've already asked once..." She says as she begins to make herself a cup. She looks over at Beast Boy and notices the slight sparkle in the corners of his eyes... Tears. Hesitantly, she makes him a cup, too. Then she places it in front of him and takes the seat across from him.
"... It's not like you to cry..." She says in a monotone voice.
"... It's not like you to care..." He snaps back.
She cuts her eyes at him, trying her best to keep her anger in check.
"It's herbal tea... You eat tofu, so I can only imagine that this won't be too far of a stretch for you..."
He looks at the steam rising from his cup. Though it is something so simple, his gaze makes it appear to be the most complex thing in the world. After a few moments of staring, he takes a sip. "... It's actually not that bad..." He says with a slight smile on his face.
Raven noticed that this smile was the first in the past couple of days. She had noticed that he hadn't been bothering her as per usual. His incessant, unfunny jokes, had not persisted, and his loud, obnoxious laugh had not interrupted the solitude she loved so much... But now, she hated that silence, because it served as a reminder of just how much everything had changed.
"... Terra..." I saw her the other day. Raven pauses, almost choking on her tea.
"What do you mean...?" She asks. Her tone now one of interest.
"I mean... I saw her, in town... Walking around... I checked her 'grave'... She wasn't there... I know the girl I saw- Talked to, was her..." He says in an incredibly depressed tone.
"... But...?" Raven pries.
"... But she doesn't remember me... Us... Anything..."
"... Maybe that's for the best..."
"... I know it is... This is the life she deserves... The life she wanted..."
"So then what's the problem...?" Raven asks as she sips her tea.
"THE PROBLEM IS, I'M NOT HAPPY!!!" His shouts of anger surprise her.
"HOW CAN SHE JUST FORGET EVERYTHING? HOW CAN SHE FORGET ME?"
Raven's hand shakes from his shouting. She tries to recover from Beast Boy's yelling.
"It's not about you..." Raven says with her eyes cut at him. "You need to let her go..."
"Easy for you to say... You don't know what it's like to be hurt like that..." Beast Boy responded coldly.
That was it. Raven had very little patience and he had just used it all up. "I HAD AN EVIL DRAGON PRETEND TO LOVE ME, JUST SO HE COULD USE ME AS A PORTAL TO COME TO OUR REALM AND DESTROY THE WORLD! DON'T TELL ME THAT I DON'T KNOW HEARTACHE!!!" She yells. She quickly realizes what she has just done... And also how strange that statement had sounded. She didn't want to fight. She was trying to comfort him. But still, her anger gets the better of her.
Beast Boy almost falls out of his chair in shock.
"So she's moved on and has a life without you! Get over it!" She snaps.
Beast Boy seems angry at first... Then hurt sets in. Usually, Raven's cold words mattered little to him, but this night, they hurt him more than any wound that he had ever been inflicted.
"YOU-... You-... You're right... You're right..." Beast Boy says with a confusing smile on his face. His sad tone seems out of place. He tries to smile through his pain, but a single tear makes it past his clenched eyes and rolls down his cheek.
Raven sees this and immediately knows something is wrong... She has never seen any of her team mates cry. And considering his regular demeanor, she never expected to see him, of all people cry.
"Thanks, Rae.." He says as he gets up from the table. "Good talk..." His voice now cracking.
"... What did I just do...?" She thinks.
Best Boy begins to walk away from the table.
"Beast Boy, wait!" She pleads as she jumps up from the table. He stops in his tracks.
"I'm sorry..." She says. "I didn't mean to-..." She begins.
"It's all good, Rae!" Beast Boys says turning slightly. She can clearly see him now. No longer is he the goof ball, who never frowns, or the annoyance with no feelings other than joy. No, his tears show a soul, completely tortured by pain. He quickly wipes them away.
"No... It's not..." She says as she makes her way to him. Her kindness even shocks her.
"Why are you being so nice to me...?" He asks, confused.
"... Because... I'm... Your friend..." She says awkwardly. Being nice to him is visually taking a strain on her. The two make their way to the couch to talk.
"... Raven..." Beast Boy starts.
"... Yeah..." She responds without any true voice inflection.
"... I remember the whole dragon thing... Malchior..."
Malchior, the name sounded like a curse word to her. That day, that terrible day. That evil creature that convinced her that he loved her. That horrid beast that lied to her from the very start. That despicable monster that brought her to tears... Tears she never would have shown otherwise... But then she remembered something... That night, when it was all over, Beast Boy had come to her door. He had tried to comfort her as best as possible.
He had told her what she needed to hear most. Not that she was beautiful, or even that she was normal, or that someone wanted to be with her... But that she wasn't alone... And that she had him, if she had no one else.
She had hugged him that day. She had wrapped her arms so tightly around him and she honestly did not want to let go. That feeling of belonging, of acceptance, had helped her to keep her sanity. In that moment, she had felt an emotion towards Beast Boy that she never thought she could ever feel for anyone else, least of all him: Love. She loved him for being there. Though he didn't have all the answers, he did have genuine feelings. He cared.
"... Uhh... Raven..." Beast Boy says. Raven snaps back to reality, only now realizing that she had been staring at him that whole time.
"Huh?" Raven says as she attempts to regain her mental status.
"... I was just saying... I'm sorry about how he hurt you... And for what I said... You know heart break, too..."
"... It's fine..." She says. "... Someone like me isn't supposed to feel love, anyway..."
"You can't mean that, Rae."
"My emotions trigger my abilities... Anger, sadness, they all result in bad explosions of my power."
"But their both bad emotions... Love could have a different affect..."
"LOVE isn't for me!" She snaps.
Beast Boy hears the hurt in her voice. She needed to be loved. To be important to someone. Sure she had the team, but that feeling just wasn't the same. In truth, Beast Boy had long since held deep feelings for her. Before he even knew who Terra was, he had had a crush on Raven. Though she was his complete opposite down to the very core. Blue vs. Green. Serious vs. Playful. Sarcastic vs. Earnest. Negative vs. Positive... But just like an opposite, she attracted him. He couldn't deny that watching her walk around in her skin tight unitard hadn't caught his eye, or that her full lips hadn't peaked his interest.
He had longed to kiss those lips, but considering how only negative, hurtful words ever crossed them, he had wrote that desire, that fantasy, off as an impossibility.
"... Love is for everyone, Raven... Even though it can leave us hurting, everyone needs to feel loved..."
"This isn't about me, Beast Boy... This is supposed to be about you..." She murmurs.
"... Well, in a way it is... You're important to me, Raven.. So making sure you're ok is jut as much for me as it is for you..."
She stared at him. Though her face showed a total lack of interest in what he was saying, on the inside she was confused by what had just come from his mouth.
"... Look, Beast Boy... I appreciate the concern... I know we haven't been the best of friends, but-"
"What do you mean!?" He cuts her off. "Rae, I trust you with my life... You ARE one of my best friends... I really care about you... I love you..."
For once, Raven is at a loss for words. Color pours onto her face as she blushes. "... Love..." She repeats, staring at him. She quickly looks away. "Thanks for the thought, but I don't need anyone to love me..." She looks down at her pale, greyish hands. "...I'm a freak..." She says coldly.
"NO, you're not!" He says as he grabs her hands. "You're unique, sure. But you're strong, and smart, and beautif-" He begins, but stops when he realizes that he is about to say much more than he wishes for her to know.
Raven snaps her head in his direction. "Beautiful...?" She thinks. His hands are warm. He has yet to release his grip. She looks down, her entire face red now.
"OH!" He shouts as he pulls back, finally noticing how tight he was holding her.
"... Beast Boy... Were you about to call me beautiful...?" She asked, honestly interested and confused.
"... I... I..." He stumbles, trying to figure out what he's going to say. "Oh to hell with it!" He shouts. "Yes, you're beautiful! You're amazing! You, you... I don't even know where to begin..." He says flustered.
"You compliment me... Sure you're mean sometimes... A lot of times... But that's what helps balance us... If you weren't around, I wouldn't have much of a reason to make so many jokes... I have to make you laugh..." He say trying his hardest to summarize. "...You make me who I am..." He says, anticipating a deep, cutting comment. He looks to see her staring down at her lap. Sweat begins to form on his brow as he notices her biting her lip.
"No one... No one has ever called me beautiful before... And meant it..." She says as she quickly looks away. A small. glimmering pearl of water flies off of her face: A tear. Beast Boy is at a loss for words. Just as she never knew he could cry, he never knew she could either. She attempts to regain her composure and quickly wipes the remains of her tear away.
"... Ok... That's enough for sharing time..." She says as she gets to her feet. "I'm going to head back to bed..." She comments.
"So you always wake up in the middle of the night, get some piping, hot tea, and go straight back to sleep...?" He asks.
Raven stops and thinks about it for a moment. "Look, I'm sorry if I made you uncomfortable, Rae... Can you just... Stay with me for a bit longer...? Please...?" He asks, almost begging.
Slowly, she sits back down. "Thanks, Rae..."
She looks at him and gives an very uncharacteristic smile. The two then look out at the view of the moon in front of them. The clouds slowly pass by, dancing in the air. The stars sparkle in the night sky and what appears to be a shooting star comes into sight, but just for a minute. As the two begin to yawn they slowly drift into sleep.